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Author Topic: ...Interesting result  (Read 1039 times)

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Offline Spike

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...Interesting result
« on: April 07, 2014, 08:11:12 AM »
I'm a fan of pretty much any type of pizza that tastes good, and I have my deep dish & New York style recipes pretty much down; but I haven't really been able to pull off a Neapolitan/flat-bread type thing until I did it by accident last night and I'm wondering what happened so I can replicate it when I'm in the mood for that kind of thing again.

I have a separate, slightly thicker dough recipe for the deep dish but the one I've been making lately is the thinner dough that turned flat last night so here's what I usually do for that one.  Note that I use all-purpose flour because I do pretty much everything from pizza to deep frying to cookies and cupcakes at home and my local grocery store only carries AP and self-rising.  Couple that with the fact that we work with a relatively tight budget and you can understand why I don't bother buying 8 different types of flour and just make the one basic type work as well as I can.  Anyway...

Usually, I mix a packet of dry active yeast, a teaspoon of sugar and 1 1/2 cups of water at the proper temperature range, let it froth up and then pour that into 3 cups of flour, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of olive oil in a large bowl.  I then mix all of that up with a fork until it clumps up too much for the fork to be useful, then finish combining it by hand and knead it for a few minutes until it comes together, cover the dough ball in some more olive oil, cover the bowl with a damp paper towel and saran wrap for an hour, punch it all down, use half of the dough for one pizza and either use the rest for another one immediately or save it for later.  After the first de-gassing, I usually let it re-rise while I'm prepping and applying the sauce, cheese and toppings so that by the time it's risen again, it's ready to go in the oven.

The pizza I made last night was from a half-batch of that dough that had been in the fridge in a sealed Ziploc bag for about a week, maybe a day or two longer.  I had been a little worried about whether or not it was still good but it felt, looked and smelled fine, it just had dimples where the air bubbles would usually be so I went ahead with it figuring that it might not rise as much as usual, but it barely did at all (there were tiny bubbles in the crust so I know it rose a little bit but nowhere near as much as it usually would).  Like I said before, this is something I had been hoping to have happen at some point but I wasn't expecting it to happen when it did and I'm wondering if you could tell me if you can think of anything that might have caused it to happen and what I can do to have it happen again without having to plan it a week ahead of time?  Thanks.

Offline mitchjg

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Re: ...Interesting result
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2014, 10:43:07 AM »
A cup of flour is about 4.5 ounces (+/- 10% depending on how you scoop or fill it).
So, 3 cups is approximately 3 cups X 4.5 ounces / cup X 28.4 grams / ounce = 383 grams.

A packet of yeast is 2.25 teaspoons which, at about 3 grams per teaspoon, weighs 7 grams.

Therefore, your yeast, as a % of the flour, is at 7/383 = 1.8%.

For a dough that is refrigerated for 7 to 9 days, especially for one that was out at room temperature for an hour, that yeast amount could be as much as 10 times what you need.

The dough was probably very over-fermented and, hence, no oven spring.

Try cutting the yeast wayyyyy back for a week long ferment.

For example, you may want to read through this thread:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=7761.0
Glutenboy specifies less than 0.2% yeast (IDY).  Yours is ADY so you need a bit more but I think you will see my point.  See reply 20 for specific clarification about the yeast.

- Mitch
Mitch

“We hate math,” says 4 in 10 – a majority of Americans

amyamrap

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Re: ...Interesting result
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2014, 01:30:37 PM »
Congrats at having reliable pies. I'm getting there :)

Regarding stocking your pantry with different flours: Just as maintaining a full gas tank is no more costly than constantly driving near empty, so too is it not more expensive to bake with project specific flours. The cost is per bake is the same.

Plus, cutting back on yeast will save real money. You're spending ~ 70¢ per packet i.e., 70¢ per pie. Using 10% of that yeast should be sufficient and saves 63¢ per pie. 9 pies later you've got yourself a free 5 pound bag of flour!
« Last Edit: April 07, 2014, 01:52:58 PM by amyamrap »

Offline Spike

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Re: ...Interesting result
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2014, 05:00:53 PM »
Thanks Mitch, I'll definitely check that site out.  Every dough recipe I've found so far (not that it was that many, I basically found one online and the one I use now I modified from a book I got for my birthday last year) had a higher yeast content so I wasn't aware I could cut back on it that much.

Thanks Amy.  I've found one of the things that helped me get my current dough recipe down was making it outside my own kitchen (like at a friend's place or when visiting my dad).  Dad's house was particularly fun because when we went to the grocery store and I suggested pizza, he immediately headed for the Boboli and I got to give him the "wtf face" and say "come on, I make dough now, let's do this right.  I'm gonna go find yeast".  I'm aware that keeping different kinds of flour won't really cost more in the long run, but my other issue is that neither of my local grocery stores carry anything other than AP and self-rising.  I'm pretty sure I've never even seen a bag of bread flour to be able to buy it.  There are Whole Foods and Trader Joe's stores in other neighborhoods so I can check for it there next time I'm in the area, it's just always slipped my mind the other times I've been there.

Offline mitchjg

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Re: ...Interesting result
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2014, 05:17:58 PM »
You are welcome. 

Many / Most "beginner" recipes call for a full packet of yeast and making the pizza within very few hours of mixing the dough - just as you described.

It is fast and easy but is generally frowned upon by most of the very experienced people here on this website (and in general by people that know a lot about making pizza and/or make a living at it).  You will get much, much better flavor in the dough and more digestibility if you let it ferment longer.  To let it ferment longer, you need to use less yeast.

For NY style pizza, most will refrigerate the dough for at least 24 hours.  There are a zillion approaches to this.  Check out the NY style forum on this website.  There is an incredible amount of information but you do need to be willing to invest the time to read through many of the threads to get the hang of it.

good luck,
Mitch


Mitch

“We hate math,” says 4 in 10 – a majority of Americans

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